6 Dec 2016

Group Integrity and the Dutch University of Applied Sciences "Hogeschool VHL" collaborate again

Following the initial successful and positive collaboration between Group Integrity and the Dutch University of Applied Sciences "Hogeschool VHL” last year, Organic Services’ software is being used as part of the university’s curriculum for the second year in a row. Group Integrity is an important component of the study unit, "The Traceability for Sustainability,” and is made available to students in their senior year.

VHL University will develop assignments for this study unit in collaboration with the Group Integrity team. As done previously, Javier Montanez of the Group Integrity team will serve as a coach to tutor VHL students on the use of Group Integrity, having already held a workshop with them, and will provide support when needed.

Group Integrity supports audit management, audit documentation, non-compliance follow-up, external reporting (market, certification) and internal quality verification system management processes (e.g. ICS, PGS, and GLOBALG.A.P. Option 2). What makes Group Integrity unique is its combined support of a variety of processes in one tool, not only for grower groups, but also for businesses who contract smallholder farmers and for the certifiers who certify them, covering these connected stakeholders with one tool. Group Integrity is the ultimate solution for professionally managing farmer groups and helps transform groups into a well-structured, transparent and reliable market partners. Group Integrity is a service offered by Organic Services.

By the end of the study unit, students should be familiar with the core concept of Group Integrity. In the sense of collaboration, students will prepare a brief essay that summarizes their hands-on experience with Group Integrity, which gives them the opportunity to provide feedback in case they have any suggestions on how to improve the user experience. By working with Group Integrity, students get a taste of the real world by learning about internal control systems (ICS) for group certification from a practical point of view and are able to expand their skill set by learning how to use the most advanced software for the organic and Fair Trade certification process.

Organic Services looks forward to working with the VHL students and faculty and wishes them a good start and much success for the future.